I made myself a bra and realized at the very end that the bridge wasn't wide enough at the bottom. Instead of tossing it (or torturing myself by being squished) I realized I could add more room to the width of the bridge. Separator wire to the rescue!
One of the biggest rewards for me in creating lingerie patterns is helping sewists tweak patterns to get the perfect fit for their bodies. I think many of us turn to sewing our own clothes when we can't find what we want or need in the stores, and sewing at home can be a lonely and sometimes frustrating experience when our projects don't turn out right.
Over the last couple of years I have created quite a few blog posts for pattern alterations to get the perfect fit in bras/bralettes and panties. I have a blog category in my sidebar where you can find them all, but with so many now it is a bit cumbersome to scroll through them all. So, I have created a single page dedicated to the pattern alteration posts, and you can find what you need more easily. I hope these alterations are helpful for you to get the perfect fit.
If there are any other pattern fitting topics for bras and panties you'd like to see, leave me a comment below.
Until next time,
Today I am going to share with you two ways to adjust the gusset length. There are two possible issues when it comes to gusset length, and each has a different solution. The gusset length can either be too short, and extra length is needed, or the gusset position on the body is incorrect (but the overall length is fine) and the position needs to be readjusted.
Problem: The gusset length is too short
Bodies come in all shapes and sizes, and very rarely do we fit perfectly into a pattern straight away. Pattern designers create patterns with a measurement chart of "standard sizes", but each size chart will vary by company. You might fit perfectly into a single size, or you might find that your individual measurements span several sizes. In the tutorial below, I will share you with how to adjust your panty patterns when your waist and hip measurements fall between two different sizes.
Ahead of publishing my new lace boyshort pattern, I wanted to share with you a pattern alteration to help achieve the best fit in boyshorts. Do you ever find the back of the leg opening gaping at the bum? Perhaps you have a flatter bum or narrower hips than what the pattern is drafted for. Below is a simple pattern alteration to shorten the width of the leg opening to get a smoother fit.
Problem: Gaping at the bum
Excess fabric and looseness at the back leg opening
Solution: Shorten the width of the leg opening
Determine the excess amount and divide by two. For this example, let's use 1" as the excess amount; divided in two and we have 1/2".
On the pattern piece, bring in the inseam at the leg opening 1/2" on each side. You can see the new inseam and leg opening lines below drawn in red. Measure the new inseam length on each side to make sure the lengths match. Adjust if necessary.
If you are using a pattern with elastic or bands to finish the leg opening, you will need to shorten those lengths as well.
If you have any questions, or suggestions for other panty fitting tutorials, leave me a comment below. Until next time, Happy Sewing.
When I create patterns, I try to make them easy to customize not only for style but for fit as well. To get an optimal fit in the Delvine Bralette, it may be necessary to move the dart position so that it is aligned with the apex on the body.
What is the apex?
The apex is the fullest part of the bust, usually where the nipple lies. In the photo above, you can see that the dart aligns with the fullest part of the bust, and also aligns with the vertical seam on the dress form. Depending on your body shape, it may be necessary to alter the apex position on the pattern pieces.
Below is a video tutorial showing you how to determine your apex measurement and how to alter the pattern pieces. As I mention in the video, regardless of what front style you wish to use, you will need to begin with changing the pattern piece for Front A, D, E, F. Once you have changed it, you will need to copy the changes to Front B/C and any of the lace overlay pieces you wish to use.
Other Dart Questions
I have received a few other dart-related questions, so I will answer them here.
Why does the dart go past the apex?
Usually when sewing tops and dresses, we want the dart to end 1"+ away from the apex point. If the dart ended directly at the apex, that would create pointiness in the bust, which is not very flattering. On my initial sample of the Delvine, I had the dart end directly at the apex point and the shape it created was pointy and not very pretty. But having the dart end above the apex point creates a nice rounded shape.
Why are the dart legs curved?
Again, when sewing tops and dresses, we usually see straight dart legs. Curved dart legs create a shape that contours more closely to the body, and in bra-making we definitely want a close fit! The curves in the dart legs create a rounded shape that contours to the roundness of the breast.
How can I transfer the dart onto my fabric?
When I made my samples, I used transfer marking paper and a tracing wheel. But one of my testers had a brilliant idea! She printed out an extra front piece and cut out the dart area, then used that to trace the dart.
Do you have any other dart-related questions? Ask me in the comments section below. Until next time, Happy Sewing!
When I design a pattern, I try to offer four style variations. Sometimes I'll have ideas for more variations, but, for a number of reasons, I can't include them all in the pattern. When I was working on the Elodie Briefs I had more ideas for lace overlays, which will be used for a new pattern in the future, and I also had an idea for a strappy option that uses elastic along the sides instead of the side panels. The pattern was already long enough, so I decided to offer the instructions here as a pattern hack. I hope you enjoy.
I design lingerie sewing patterns for everyday comfort and feminine style in an inclusive size range. Fill up your underwear drawer with beautiful custom made panties in your favorite fabrics and trims, designed to fit your body.